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The Death of Innocence : The Untold Story of JonBenet's Murder and How Its Exploitation Compromised the Pursuit of Truth Hardcover – March 17, 2000

2.9 out of 5 stars 219 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Part memoir, part murder mystery and part diatribe, this book targets socially conservative Christians, but much of its content will undoubtedly engender sympathy in a broader audience. In response to three years of allegations that they killed their daughter, the Ramseys have written their side of the story, refuting the myriad accusations leveled against them and replacing them with their own recollections of events. These recollections paint a more than plausible picture of a family victimized at first by the horrific murder of a young child and then by a relentless media and police campaign to smear their reputations and prove their guilt. There is a whiff of narcissism in their tendency to refer to themselves in the third person; detailed descriptions of their homes, clothing and other possessions add to this impression. The Ramseys do, however, acknowledge that their wealth, now mostly gone, has protected them from the wrongful incarceration that many Americans endure. The Ramseys' attempt to set the record straight is at times tiresome, especially when they predictably complain about liberals who hate them because they are successful. But as we read their account of the hellishness of their lives since their daughter's murder, we realize that nothing about this situation has ever been fair and simply mourn that they had occasion to write this book at all. 16-page photo insert. Author appearances on 20/20, Today and Larry King Live.

Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

John Ramsey is the former president of Access Graphics, a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin, which grossed more than one billion dollars in sales of computer products in December 1996. John holds a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and a master's in business. He was an elder at Peachtree Presbyterian Church in Atlanta.

Patsy Ramsey graduated from West Virginia University with a degree in journalism and marketing. In 1977, she represented West Virginia in the Miss America Pageant. She worked for McCann Erickson Advertising and Hayes Microcomputer Products, Inc. in Atlanta before marrying John Ramsey. She has served as a volunteer, organizing projects such as the Egleston Children's Hospital Christmas card sale, which raised nearly $100,000, and a "Good Fairy" project that raised thousands of dollars for Boulder public schools.Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

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Product Details

  • Series: Precious Moments Seasons of Faith
  • Hardcover: 396 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (March 17, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785268162
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785268161
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (219 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #353,180 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I still don't know who killed JonBenet Ramsey, but I must saythis book has not ruled out, in my mind, her parents. Poorly writtenand hard to follow at points, but, an interesting read.
The bottom line with the Ramsey's, after all is said and done with this book, is PR (public relations) and perhaps the creation of a "boogey-man" factory in our minds. John quotes himself in the book to Patsy that "the number one priority of the attorneys and the investigators is to keep us [John and Patsy] out of jail." And here --- all this time --- I thought their number one priority was to find justice for JonBenet, to find JonBenet's killer! Couple this with the Ramsey's deep concern for what future generations of their own family will think of them, one could begin to wonder what IS at work, here? In addition, I found their suggestion of including suicide victims as suspects, particularly distasteful, if not unethical and crass. Sometime after I had decided that everyone in America (if not the world) should go to their local police department to submit voluntary samples to help solve this case, the Ramseys point their indiscriminate fingers toward yet another segment of the population ---- recent suicide victims (in these cases, their families).
Some of the charges they make against the media are fair, make no mistake about it. I would add that most people don't put a lot of trust in the tabloids, however, and sometimes not much in their local news coverages either. I also don't think that Larry King can be considered part of the tabloid establishment, yet the Ramsey's haven't really performed any better there. If they ever met with Ted Koppel, I missed it.
I do agree with the Ramsey's regarding their interpretation of the autopsy findings regarding cause of death.
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Format: Hardcover
Here's what your asking me to believe: 1. An individual who knows details about your family enters your house, failing to awake anyone in the home. 2. Removes the child, from her bed. 3. Murders the child in the basement with the mother's paintbrush handle. 4. Uses a pen and pad belonging to the home, to write a three page ransom note containing words like "a small foreign faction..." and asking a ransom that happens to match John's bonus. Whoever this person is they must have felt pretty comfortable in the home. 5. Despite the Boulder PD inept handling of the crime scene, the family aggravates the investigation by applying conditions to the interviews. The body was found in the home. That means the people in the home had opprotunity and are the primary suspects until cleared. I would think that you would expect to be prime suspects, and would rush to clear yourselves. I would say that if the police had to bargain to gain access to you, you were not exactly cooperating. 6. You deny that bed wetting and toliet training is a leading cause of child abuse. Frankly...yes there are many people who would become angry enough to kill a dog for messing the carpet.
I am a police officer. I am not a homicide detective. I am not an expert. However, considering that your daughter was killed in your home, in your presence, with your paintbrush, and the lengthy ransom note was written in your home, with your pen and your paper. Im surprised that you seem offended and feel the need to protect yourself from police inquiry when the investigation has naturally focused on you as suspect. If the suspect's motive was money, why not remove the child, live or dead, from the home, and carry on with the ransome demand?
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By A Customer on February 23, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
...it's fun to read stories that you assume are largely fiction but have characters that you know from movies, history, etc. I was certain that "The Death of Innocence" fell squarely into that category. However, I was surprised to find it to be a fairly well written memoir that presented a plausible case for the Ramsey's innocence. While the book didn't convince me that the Ramseys are as innocent as they claim to be...If nothing else, the book forced me to think of John, Patsy, and JonBenet as real people instead of two-dimensional tabloid characters...
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By A Customer on June 18, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Consider this, innocence falls asleep in the back seat of a car, riding home on Christmas night and is never seen again. Her mother, a former beauty queen, her father, a successful computer mogul and a brother as much a victim as scapegoat have traveled a road that has ended nowhere. . . they have just entered the Ramsey Zone where truth is stranger than fiction and innocence is dead on arrival.
In their book they attempt to give us a seamless version of the events of that fateful night but what they end up doing is creating a black hole of illogical and incomprehensible fabrications.
John and Patsy, a "loving couple" have no contact from the time the car pulls into the driveway until Patsy discovers the ransom note the next morning.
Patsy neglects to tell police in her 911 call that the kidnappers have threatened the life of their daughter if police are called and that they are watching the house.
Although the kidnappers state in the note that the Ramseys are not to talk to a stray dog or their daughter will be beheaded, they immediately call several friends and invite them over. They tell interviewers that they wish they had invited over more friends.
John spots a suspicious van parked in the back alley but doesn't mention it to the houseful of police.
Patsy would like us to believe that the former beauty queen doesn't need a daily shower or clean clothes, just a face full of makeup to start her day.
John would like us to believe that he spies the alleged escape hatch of the kidnappers, the broken window in the basement with the suitcase poised underneath but never mentions this breakthrough to the many police upstairs.
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